Now that the Blue Heron space is once again open to the public, the gorgeous grounds of a reimagined Sunrise Springs Spa Resort are a bonus. Able to bill itself as the region's only waterside dining, the restaurant overlooks a pond that's visited by birds and dragonflies and is home to turtles and fish. Towering cottonwoods and lovely close landscaping lead diners over a bridge and onto a grassy lawn. On the heels of closing his culinary school downtown, chef Rocky Durham is spreading out with his quiet, kind cuisine. The kitchen has access to a farm operated on the spa's sister property in Ojo Caliente, and Durham makes use of seasonal ingredients to build beautiful, healthy plates. His desserts are also remarkable, yet there's nothing too rich or fatty on the menu. Plus the chef includes tempting vegan options like the lunch menu's Three Sister Tamales with white beans, English peas and mild red chile sauce ($15). Though dinner leads to stargazing and we love that, we recommend a lunch or brunch foray, followed by a soak in a private tub and a few minutes on a swing that hangs from a tree. No regrets.

Blue Heron Restaurant
242 Los Pinos Road, La Cienega, (877) 977-8212
Lunch and dinner daily; brunch Sunday
Twitter: @SunriseSpringNM
Instagram: @sunrisespringsnm